Creativity Under Occupation: Two Palestinian Fashion Labels To Watch Out For

Despite Israel’s attempts to suppress Palestine’s creative scene through long term occupation and more recent forms of cultural appropriation, there are artists and designers that are defying the odds and firmly preserving Palestine’s name on the map. Meera Adnan and tRashy CLOTHING are two new fashion labels that place activism at the forefront of their work and are representatives of a radical new generation in Palestine’s creative scene. 

Meera Adnan 

Meera Adnan Albaba is a Palestinian contemporary womenswear designer. Her label crosses borders and spaces by operating from Gaza City, the infamous city under siege. It has been almost thirteen years since the start of the Gaza blockade, which has caused a dwindling economy and significant decline in living standards. With a 52% unemployment rate in the blockaded region, Adnan Albaba’s label aims to support the local textile industry and build a platform for Palestinian creativity. 

Although still in the beginning stages of establishing her label, Meera Adnan is one to watch. The designs focus on reclaiming narrative and are influenced by the religious, political, and local references in Gaza. Aiming to tell personal stories through her work, Adnan Albaba plays on gendered stereotypes and reverts tradition whilst remaining true to her Palestinian identity. Many of the women’s pieces celebrate unconventionality through boxy fits and masculine cuts, whereas one men’s t-shirt design adorns the words ‘smooth as silk, sweet as honey’. Adding a romantic twist to her clothing makes Adnan Albaba’s label an exciting, unique, and radically different addition to the Middle Eastern fashion scene. 

Having just recently hosted a pop-up shop at Alserkal Avenue (Dubai), Meera Adnan shows real promise of international influence. A new collection will be available to purchase on their website later this month, which you can view here.


Palestinian designer Shukri Lawrence established tRashy CLOTHING (not a typo, I promise) in 2017 after seeking an antidote to bigotry and outdated orientalised stereotypes put upon the Middle East. Today, the label is also supported by designers Omar Braika, Reem Kawasmi, and Luai Al-Shuaibi. Together, they aim to reclaim the Arab and Palestinian identity as well as reclaim what is considered different, cheap, and trashy in modern culture. Their designs are every e-kid’s dream: bold prints, daring colours, and statement t-shirts. 

Inspiration for their designs come from old city markets, thrift shops, and fake goods. Vulgarity and tackiness are part of the brand, and are unapologetically celebrated. By opposing the traditional conventions of fashion, tRashy CLOTHING is rebellious and empowering. Their designs do not conform to gender stereotypes, paving the way for more gender-neutral fashion labels for the Middle East. 

Last year, tRashy CLOTHING were contacted by Hatari, the Icelandic band that caused controversy at the 2019 Eurovision Contest, hosted in Tel Aviv, by waving a Palestinian flag on live international television. Hatari, known for their daring style, were interested in collaborating with the Palestinian band and have since worked together on a collection. You can shop this collection, amongst others, on tRashy CLOTHING’s website.


Omaya Michelle

  • Eclectic soul
  • Staying Mindful
  • Ardently Artistic